Orlov, Blankenberg, Ozols, Lind, Ferber

January 30, 2016

Julian Orlov

  • Julian Orlov was born in Moscow (or in Lodz) in a Jewish family of cotton manufacturers. He studied at Moscow University and was most likely a political escapee from Russia. He was in Egypt when the war broke out and joined the Zion Mule Corps of the British Army, serving as David Weinberg. He was wounded at Gallipoli, evacuated to Egypt and sailed to Australia. After working for three months on a farm he enlisted in the AIF in Newcastle.
  • He served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front, attaining the rank of Sergeant. He was mentioned in despatches for conspicuous bravery and gallantry in a June 1917 offensive and was severely wounded in July 1917, probably at Messines, and returned to Australia.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Mary Bridget Macfarlane, and took up farming in the Bilambil Soldier Settlement, becoming an active member of local community and contributing scores of letters and articles to the local newspaper. He joined the 2nd AIF in WWII and served in a training battalion.

John William Blankenberg

  • John William Blankenberg, a seaman from Latvia, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 24th Battalion on the Western Front. In March 1918 he was gassed, but rejoined his battalion and was awarded the Military Medal for bravery in the field during the attack on Ville-sur-Ancre in May 1918. His heroism was mentioned in Charles Bean’s official history of Australian participation in WWI. In October 1918 he was killed during the attack on the Hindenburg line.

Julius Ozols

  • Julius Ozols, a Latvian seaman from Riga, came to Australia in 1914.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served as a gunner with the 15th Field Artillery Brigade on the Western Front.
  • After the war he married Enera, born in Russia, and lived with his family in Melbourne, working as a striker.

Anthony Lind

  • Anthony Lind from Finland participated in the Boer War in the Cape Colony Cycle Corps; he naturalized in South Africa. Coming to Australia, he worked as a prospector in Western Australia.
  • Enlisting in the AIF he came to the Western Front with the 11th Battalion, but soon became sick and was repatriated to Australia.
  • After the war he lived in Linden, a remote part of Western Australia, working as a prospector.

George Ferber

  • George Ferber, a Jewish man from Melitopol, came to Australia from Harbin, where his family lived. In Australia he worked as a draper.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Brisbane he was discharged five months later as medically unfit. A few months later he re-enlisted in Sydney, giving his occupation as a stockman, and was allocated to a Camel Regiment; he served in Egypt and Palestine.
  • After the war he left Australia for the USA, where he married and lived in Los Angeles.

Barfield, Blomquist, Gvinzadze, Jakimov, Kullerhein

January 29, 2016

Leopold Powell Warschaur Barfield

  • Leopold Powell Warschaur Barfield, a Jewish man from Radom in Poland, served in the Russian army during the Russo-Japanese war. He came to Australia in 1908 as a seaman and worked as a shipping agent, interpreter, and shopkeeper in Newcastle and married Rebecca Lewis in 1912.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front and was a runner in the Pachendale stunt. In December 1917 he was wounded in the left leg with an aerial bomb.
  • After the war he lived in Newcastle and South Australia, working as a commercial traveller, driver and interpreter. During WWII he enlisted in the AIF and served in a garrison battalion.

Hugo William Blomquist

  • Hugo William Blomquist, a Finnish seaman, came to Australia in 1912.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 45th Battalion on the Western Front. In June 1917 he was wounded at Messines, but remained on duty. In February 1918 at the battle for Hill 60 at Hollebeke he was taken prisoner.
  • Released after the war, he returned to Australia and worked as a station hand in New South Wales, dying in 1932 from TB.

Anisim Gvinzadse

  • Anisim Gvinzadse, a Georgian from Kutaisi, worked as a seaman since his youth, coming to Australia in 1911.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Newcastle, he was discharged a few weeks later as medically unfit.
  • After the war he was farming in Cooranbong, but later continued his occupation as a seaman.

Gregory Jakimov

  • Gregory Jakimov was born in Kamenets-Podolsky in Ukraine; his parents were ‘Bohemian’, i.e. from the Czech province of Bohemia. He came to Australia in 1911, most likely as a seaman, and worked at Momba Station in New South Wales.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 35th Battalion on the Western Front. In July 1917, at the battle for Messines, he was severely wounded in the left arm and repatriated to Australia.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Marjorie Alice Hayne, and was working as a farm manager and rural worker in Sydney area. His two sons served in the RAAF during WWII, and the elder, Gregory, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross.

Jacob Kullerhein

  • Jacob Kullerhein, an Estonian seaman from Turbuneeme, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was in Sydney.
  • He came to the Western front with the 53rd Battalion in September 1916, and in November 1916, at the Somme, he was severely wounded by a bomb and died two weeks later.
  • His widowed mother was found after the war in Estonia and received an Australian pension.

Andelin, Eino, Putre, Aspelin, Oossoff

January 27, 2016

Karl Johannes Andelin

  • Karl Johannes Andelin, a Finnish seaman from Helsingfors (Helsinki), came to Sydney in December 1915 and enlisted in the AIF a month later.
  • He served with the 60th and 59th battalions on the Western Front. In April 1918 he was gassed but recovered and served to the end of the war.
  • After the war he lived in Sydney working as coal lumper.

Wilho Albinus Eino

  • Wilho Albinus Eino, a ship’s carpenter from Kiukainen in Finland, was living in Sydney by the time of his enlistment in the AIF.
  • In June 1916 he arrived in Egypt with reinforcements to the 1st Light Horse Regiment, got ill with otitis, and was returned to Australia with a diagnosis of deafness.
  • After the war he worked as a seaman in the USA.

John Putre

  • John Putre, a seaman from Libava (Liepaja) in Latvia, came to Australia in 1906 and lived in Sydney. His younger brother Andrew followed him to Australia several years later.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 3rd Battalion on the Western Front, attaing the rank of Lance Corporal. He was wounded three times: in May 1917 at Bullecourt he was wounded in the knee; in April 1918 at Hazebrouck he was severely wounded in the chest, right arm and scalp. Recovering in England he returned to France and won a Military Medal for his bravery during the advance towards Bray and Chuignes. A few weeks later, at the advance south of Peronne he experienced shell concussion, with a rupture of eardrum. His brother, who enlisted in the AIF as well, was wounded a few days earlier.
  • After the war he married Agnes Victoria Stonehouse and lived in Sydney working as a seaman and coal lumper.

Karl Harry Aspelin

  • Karl Harry Aspelin, a Finnish sailor, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was living in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 8th Battalion on the Western Front; there he got sick with rheumatism and, while in the depot in England, escaped and was discharged as an illegal absentee.
  • After the war he settled in the USA, and had a family working as an engineer.

Fedor Michael Oossoff

  • Fedor Michael Oossoff, a Russian man from Sheremetevo in Simbirsk Province, came to Western Australia in 1911. He had the occupation of a bricklayer.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 57th Battalion on the Western Front, being later transferred to the 3rd Machine Gun Battalion where he served as a driver. In August 1918, at Chuignes, he was severely wounded in his left arm, both legs, head and chest.
  • In 1917, before he was despatched to the front from England, he met an English woman, Marion Knight, who worked as a waitress. They married in February 1918, and after he recovered from his wounds, they sailed to Australia together. They settled in Melbourne, where Fedor worked as a storeman and labourer.

Johnson, Nyback, Nylander, Platonoff, Schepenski

January 26, 2016

Peter Johnson

  • Peter Johnson’s true name was August Maren. He was born in Kuldiga in Latvia and was involved in revolutionary activities in Latvia and, later, in London, being a member of the Latvian terrorist group Leesma. Coming to Western Australia in 1911, he got under suspicion of the local police as the infamous ‘Peter the Painter’, the leader of the group, and was arrested, but had to be released later for lack of evidence. He found employment at an amalgam-treating plant on the goldmines.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 11th Battalion on the Western Front, later being transferred to the 51st battalion, attaining the rank of Lance Corporal. In May 1918 he was wounded in the hand and returned to Australia.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Clarice Henrietta Taney, and was farming in Roleystone near Perth. He died in a traffic accident in Sydney in 1929.

Johan Nyback

  • Johan Nyback, a Finnish labourer from Wasa, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • Five months later he deserted and was never found.

Nils Nylander

  • Nils Nylander, born in Abo, Finland, came to Australia in 1912 as a seaman and worked in Sydney as a labourer and scaffolder.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 36th Battalion as a Lewis gunner on the Western Front, attaining the rank of Lance Corporal. He was wounded four times, in January 1917 near Rouen, in October 1917 at Passchendaele, and in December 1917. Recovering in England, he returned to the battlefield and was gassed in June 1918. For his bravery during the battle for Broadwood Ridge and Passchendaele in October 1917 he was awarded the Military Medal and the Bar to the Military Medal.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Dorothy Hilda Biber, and lived in Sydney working as a foreman bridge carpenter in the railway service.

Thomas Stephen Platonoff

  • Thomas Stephen Platonoff (he served as Platonaff), was the elder brother of George Platonoff, who enlisted two months earlier. Thomas was born in Novoukrainka township in Ukraine, came to Australia in 1911 with his parents via the Russian Far East, and worked on a family sugarcane farm in Booyal.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, Thomas served with the 52nd Battalion on the Western Front. In June 1917 he was severely wounded in the arms near Camiers and repatriated to Australia.
  • Soon after demobilisation, Thomas married Vera Kurtish, a girl from a Belarusian family engaged in growing sugar-cane. First they all lived in Booyal, but in the late 1920s Thomas and his family moved further north, to the Mackay area. There they settled in Wundaru and continued the sugar-cane business, employing a number of compatriots for cane-cutting. They suffered during the depression, being evicted from their home. During the Second World War the family moved to Rockhampton and then to Brisbane, where Thomas, in spite of his age and wounds, worked as a wharf labourer and waterside worker. His end was sad. ‘A wharf labourer died a few minutes after falling and striking his head in the hold of a ship last night’, reported a local newspaper in 1954.

Victor Schepenski

  • Victor Schepenski, a Pole from Warsaw, came to Brisbane in 1910 via the Russian Far East with a group of Poles and Russians, who later enlisted in the AIF. Although a bootmaker by trade, he worked on railway construction in Quensland.
  • He served as a sapper with the Tunneling Company on the Western Front. In March 1918 he was gassed, but continued to serve to the end of the war.
  • After the war he worked as a lengthsman and a fettler in Mackay area.

Kilter, Ernst, Ketvell, Koropets, Fagerstrom

January 22, 2016

Juhan Kilter

  • Juhan Kilter, an Estonian sailor from Arensburg (Kuressaare) on Saaremaa Island, came to Australia in January 1916 and enlisted five days later.
  • In two months he was discharged and probably left Australia.

Robert Ernst

  • Robert Ernst, a sailor from Libava (Liepaja) in Latvia, came to Australia in 1912 after working for 5 years in New Zealand.
  • Enlisting in the AIF as Robert Arnst, he served with the 55th Battalion on the Western Front. In March 1918 he got sick with a tubercular bone infection aggravated by active service, was returned to Australia and discharged.
  • In 1918, while in English hospital, he married Ada, but their union did not last long. In 1930 he committed suicide in Newcastle.

John Ketvell

  • John Ketvell, a Finnish seaman from Vyborg, came to Australia in November 1915 and soon enlisted in the AIF in Goulburn together with Robert Ernst.
  • Four months later he was discharged and left Australia in August 1917.

Mitrofan Koropets

  • Mitrofan Koropets, a Ukrainian from Dobrotov in Chernigov Province, worked in Australia as a miner.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served as a sapper with the 1st Mining Corps on the Western Front. In March 1918 he was gassed, but returned to the trenches.
  • After the war he lived in Sydney, was unemployed, and wanted to return to Russia. In April 1920 he committed suicide in the Botanical Gardens in Sydney.

August Fagerstrom

  • August Fagerstrom, a ship’s carpenter from Wasa in Finland, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF lived in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 5th Battalion on the Western Front, but got sick and was returned to Australia in May 1917. Soon after his discharge he reenlisted but got sick with asthma upon arrival to England.
  • After the war he returned to Finland.

Puring, Roshkovsky, Lehtonen, Pavelkin, Newman

January 19, 2016

Gustav Albert Puring

  • Gustav Albert Puring from Riga, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was working as a labourer in Adelaide.
  • He served with the 32nd Battalion on the Western Front; in November 1918 he was attached to the 59th Battalion as a German interpreter.
  • After the war he married Hannah Faulkiner and lived in Port Adelaide, working as a wood contractor. He died in 1931 leaving behind six young children.

Ion Roshkovsky

  • Ion Roshkovsky, a Jewish man from Tomsk in Siberia, came to Australia in 1915 and worked as a labourer in Brisbane.
  • A week after enlisting in the AIF he was discharged.
  • In 1917 he married Olga Trager from Russia and lived with his family in Brisbane and Sydney, working as a cook.

John Alfred Lehtonen

  • John Alfred Lehtonen, a Finnish seaman from Helsingfors (Helsinki), by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was working as a wheeler in West Maitland in New South Wales.
  • He served with the 4th Battalion on the Western Front and was killed in January 1917 near Flers.
  • His parents were found after the war.

John Pavelkin

  • John Pavelkin, a Mordvinian from Ardatov in Simbirsk Province, came to Sydney from the Russian Far East in 1913 and worked as a miner in Cobar and Boulder.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served as a sapper with the 3rd Australian Tunnelling Company on the Western Front. In July 1918 he was wounded in the leg and hand and repatriated to Australia.
  • After the war he worked as a labourer and seaman moving from Western Australia to Sydney. Newspapers would report about his performances on a ‘Russian string instrument’ ‘with harmony and sweetness’.

Emil Newman

  • Emil Newman, a carpenter in Raumo in Finland, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was working in Newcastle.
  • He served with the 35th Battalion on the Western Front. He was court martialed once for disobedience and wounded three times: in June 1917 near Messines (shell-shock), in July 1917 (gunshot wound to the left arm), and in October 1917 at Passchendaele (in the right hand). After that he worked as a stretcher-bearer and was killed while carrying rations to the line by a sniper bullet in May 1918.

Saari, Goldberg, Frisk, Greenfield, Krausman

January 15, 2016

Arthur Saari

  • Arthur Saari, from Helsingfors (Helsinki) in Finland, came to Australia in 1912 on a Finnish ship. He lived in South Australia working as a labourer.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Adelaide, he served with the 48th Battalion on the Western Front. In October 1916 he was awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal.
  • After the war he settled in Melbourne, marrying an Australian girl, Helen Grace Thompson, and became a confectioner.

Benjamin Goldberg

  • Benjamin Goldberg, a tailor from Kutno in Poland, came to Australia in 1899 and lived in Sydney.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he came with the 14th Battalion to the Western Front, got sick with TB and returned to Australia.
  • After the war he lived in Sydney and died in 1930.

Anton Emmanuel Frisk

  • Anton Emmanuel Frisk, a Finnish seaman from Mathildedal, came to Australia in 1908 and lived in Newcastle.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front. In June 1917 he was wounded at the battle for Messines. While being in a hospital in England he met an English woman, Edith Annie Saunders; they married and sailed to Australia together.
  • After the war he lived in Newcastle working as an engine driver for Dredge Service.

Peter Greenfield

  • Peter Greenfield, a seaman from Vindana (Ventspils) in Latvia, enlisted in the AIF in Newcastle, together with Frisk.
  • He served with the 34th Battalion on the Western Front. In December 1916 he was wounded in the arm. Recovering in England he was attached to guard duty at Tidworth Depot.
  • After the war he lived in Sydney. He was a lonely man and when he died in 1943 his papers, photos and journal were destroyed by the public trustee.

Nathan Krausman

  • Nathan Krausman, a Jewish man from Galatz in Bessarabia, came to Australia in 1890. He worked as a woodcutter, bush worker and public trustee in Victoria, Tasmania, Queensland, and NSW. In 1907 he married Ellen Janetzki.
  • Enlisting in the AIF, he served with the 3rd Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front until he got sick with kidney problems and was repatriated to Australia.
  • After the war he continued his outback life and died in 1928, at Nyngan.

Smoishen, Novok, Komesaroff, Walk, Taking

January 11, 2016

Abraham Smoishen

  • Abraham Smoishen, a Jewish man from Kherson Province in Ukraine, came to Sydney before the war and worked as a tailor. In 1912 he married Bertha Landes and had two children by the time of his enlistment in the AIF.
  • He served with Light Horse Field Ambulance in Egypt.
  • In the 1920s he left his family and moved to London.

Frank Novok

  • Frank Novok, a Polish man from Lublin, by the time of his enlistment in the AIF, was working as a miner in Boulder City in Western Australia.
  • He served as a sapper with the 3rd Tunneling Company on the Western Front.
  • After the war he was discharged in London, intending to work for the Empire Waterproof Company.

Peter Komesaroff

  • Peter Komesaroff, a Jewish youth, born in the agricultural colony of Andreevka in Ukraine, came to Melbourne in 1913 with his family. In Australia he worked as a draper and commercial traveler.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in the age of 17 in Cootamundra, he served with the 56th Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917, at the battle for Louveral, he was wounded in the thigh.
  • After the war he married Sarah Horowitz Isaacman from Odessa and lived with his family in Melbourne working as a travelling optician. Throughout his life he was actively involved in Jewish communal life.

Andrew Walk

  • Andrew Walk, a seaman from Dago (Saaremaa) Island in Estonia, came to Australia in 1914.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Sydney, he served with the 13th Battalion on the Western Front. In January 1917 he was killed near Bapaume.
  • His relatives in Estonia were found after the war and received his medals.

Otto Taking

  • Otto Taking, also a seaman from Dago, came to Australia in 1912 from New Zealand.
  • Enlisting in the AIF in Melbourne, he served with the 46th Battalion on the Western Front. In April 1917 he was wounded at Bullecourt in the back and left arm and transferred to to a hospital in England. He had numerous AWLs throughout his service and even managed to miss his transport on the way back to Australia.
  • After the war he continued seafaring.

Amberg, Kampman, Reiman, Tuomi, Kabatoff

January 9, 2016

Otto Amberg

  • Otto Amberg, an engineer from Arensburg (Kuressaare) on Saaremaa Island in Estonia, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • He served with the 5th Pioneer Battalion on the Western Front. In January 1917 he suffered from shell shock and was returned to Australia as medically unfit.
  • After the war he lived in Melbourne and received a military pension.

Ferdinand Kampman

  • Ferdinand Kampman, a ship’s fireman from Pianru in Estonia, came to Melbourne in January 1916 and enlisted together with Amberg on the same day. They both provided as their address in Australia the name of R. Hunter from Melbourne Estonian Society.
  • They served in the same Pioneer battalion on the Western Front. In May 1918 Kampman got sick and was returned to Australia.
  • After the war he married an Australian girl, Francess Maria Penhalluriack; they lived in Melbourne, where Kampman worked as a wharf labourer.

Frederick Reinhold Reimann

  • Frederick Reinhold Reimann from Piarnu in Estonia served for four months in the Russian Navy, came to Australia in 1913, probably as a seaman, and worked in South Australia.
  • Enlisting in Adelaide, he served with the 27th Battalion on the Western Front. He got sick with neurasthenia and was despatched to work in Bulford, a hospital for servicemen infected with venereal diseases. He refused to work there, was returned to Australia and discharged as ‘undesirable’ and ineligible for medals.
  • After the war he married and lived in South Australia. For years he struggled in vain to receive his medals, but nevertheless he died a hero: he served in the Merchant Navy aboard the Kowarra, which was torpedoed in April 1943 by a Japanese submarine near Fraser Island, with the tragic loss of 21 lives, including Reimann.

Oscar Tuomi

  • Oscar Tuomi, a ship’s fireman from Abo (Turku) in Finland, was working on sailing ships since 1899; he came to Australia in August 1915.
  • Enlisting in Adelaide, as Tuami, he served with the 32nd battalion on the Western Front. In July 1916 he was court martialled for disobedience, arguing that he did not understand English well; a year later his sentence was suspended and he was sent to the battlefront to the 48th Battalion where he won a Military Medal for bravery and devotion to duty while ‘carrying wounded men under extremely dangerous fire’ at the battle for Pashendale in October 1917.
  • After the war he lived in South Australia, marrying Australian woman Marjorie Avis Henderson.

Ivan Vasiliff Kabatoff

  • Ivan Vasiliff Kabatoff, a Russian from Nizhni Novgorod, worked in Australia as a labourer.
  • Enlisting in Sydney, he served with the 13th Battalion on the Western Front. His father contacted the Russian consul in Australia in 1917 to learn about the destiny of his son, only to find that he had been killed at Mouquet Farm in August 1916.

 

Johanson, Rattus, Aho, Porinoff, Henrikson

January 8, 2016

Gustaf Johanson

  • Gustaf Johanson, a Finnish seaman, lived in Melbourne by the time of enlistment.
  • He served with the 21st battalion on the Western Front. In March 1917 he was wounded but recovered and returned to the trenches. In July 1918 he was killed in the battle near Amiens.
  • His family in Finland was found after the war and received his medals.

Richard Rattus

  • Richard Rattus, a baker from Estonia, came to Australia in 1913 and worked as a labourer.
  • Enlisting in Adelaide, he served with the 27th battalion on the Western Front. In May 1917, at Bullecourt, he was wounded in the leg and in September the same year he was wounded at Mennin Road for the second time, in the hand.
  • After the war he married Esther Ackolson and lived in Adelaide, working as a machinist.

Jacob Aho

  • Jacob Aho, a carpenter from Finland, arrived in Melbourne in January 1916 and immediatedly enlisted in the AIF.
  • Soon after that he disappeared, posted as a deserter, but was never found.

Alix Porinoff

  • Alix Porinoff, a Russian labourer, enlisted in the AIF in Sydney.
  • Soon he disappeared, posted as a deserter, but was never found.

Karl August Henrikson

  • Karl August Henrikson, a sailor from Lovisa in Finland, enlisted in the AIF in Melbourne.
  • Two weeks later he disappeared and was never found.